Volume 26 (2003) / Issue 1
There is broad agreement that the transition to a market-based economy in countries in Sub-Sahara Africa (SSA) requires supporting institutions to be successful. This article discusses efforts by Kenya and Zambia to improve market performance with the enactment and implementation of a competition law. Kenya established the Monopolies and Prices Commission (MPC) and Zambia established the Zambia Competition Commission (ZCC). These Commissions are responsible for monitoring such market practices as restrictive business practices, control of monopolies and concentration of economic power, and mergers and takeovers that could have anti-competitive effects. The article concludes that for the laws in the two countries to achieve their intended objectives, there is a need to fine-tune provisions to remove ambiguities, harmonise these laws with other trade laws to prevent jurisdictional problems, guard the independence of the Commissions against political interference, and strengthen the human and technical resources of the Commissions in the areas of market research and competition analysis. This latter need calls for considerable donor support given the budget constraints facing the two countries. The study finds the efforts in these countries laudable and worthy of study by other countries in SSA that are interested in developing market-monitoring institutions.
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